The Inwood Boxing Academy: Keeping the Youth of Washington Heights off The Streets
By Matt Yanofsky: As you walk off the streets of Uptown Manhattan and down the steps at 651 Academy Street, the first thing you may notice is the diminutive size of the Inwood Boxing Academy. The Gym’s owner Joe Brender says even though his gym is small in size, it has a big impact on many at risk youths in the Inwood and Washington Heights area.. “We are servicing the community as plenty of young people are coming to the gym and working hard. We have troubled kids joining the gym because their parents want them off the streets. We are training them to become boxers, but not fighters. We are their mentors and we are professionals”, said Brender.
The gym which mostly is used by amateurs training for the Golden Gloves does host a few pros. Former IBA cruiserweight champion Bobby Gunn and USBA title challenger/Edgar Santana conqueror Harrison Cuello have trained at the Inwood Boxing Academy in preparation for their licensed bouts. When asked about the gym, Gunn was happy to discuss his experience at the Inwood Boxing Academy
“Joe Brender is one of the nicest and most honest people in New York boxing today. He is a dear friend of mine and if any boxer is looking for a nice place to train, you have to look no further then the Inwood Boxing Academy”, said Gunn who just fought to a bloody draw March 22nd in Arizona.
The Inwood Boxing Academy has not only kept many youths who were once looking for trouble in a positive atmosphere but the gym also acts is an excellent example of what is needed to keep children away from potential dangers in a tough city environment.